Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Real Books

Last Thursday, these beauties arrived in the mail from this seller:

Nancy Garden's Vampires (1973)

Donald F. Glut's True Vampires of History (1971)

The first book was one of the early ventures into vampire non-fiction for kids and the second is a compilation of "true" vampire cases, for the paranormally inclined, arranged in chronological order.

And, I already have copies of both.

So why did I buy 'em?

The copy of Garden's book that I already owned is a 1979 Bantam Skylark reprint and in the last coupla years, I've become a stickler for first editions. Or, at the very least, first editions published in the same year and by the same publisher.

They're much prettier to cite and things can get lost along the way when they're reprinted.

For the record, Garden's first edition was published in Philadelphia and New York by J. B. Lippincott Company. The book I have is its fourth printing.

As to Glut's book, the copy I have is a bibliographic nightmare. Its title page lists it as being "An Official Publication of HC Publishers, Inc.," but lower down, says that it's "A Castle Books, Inc. Edition" "Distributed To The Trade" "By Book Sales, Inc."

No place of publication is given, except page 2 reveals it was "Printed in U.S.A."

My copy also had no dust jacket.

So, when I saw this copy on eBay, I couldn't resist, especially as it was listed as a first edition. However, when I turned to the title page, what did I see?

Yep, the same blasted publication info!

So, essentially, I paid for...a dust jacket! D'oh!

The dust jacket, however, does reveal a place of publication, at least: Secaucus, New Jersey. Of course, this is for Castle Books, not H. C. Publishers. Which, of course, means that the original edition is floating about somewhere out there.

Gonna have to chase it up.

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